There are 77,000 people with one thing in common – they need a kidney. One Cheney woman is crusading to get her's before it's too late.
People go on Facebook for all kinds of reasons; to find a long lost friend, maybe. Jennifer Shuman is looking for someone more specific.
“It's going to be difficult but they're out there,” Shuman said.
At 15, kidney disease killed Shuman's dad. Six years later, she received the same diagnosis.
“It causes scaring so after time it just slowly starts scaring the kidneys and the scarred parts fail and there's no way to correct that and it's both kidneys,” Shuman said.
Ten years and two kids later, her kidneys are deteriorating. Doctors say they function at just 18-percent. It's enough to put her on the donor list and just shy of needing dialysis.
“After seeing my dad go through that I'm terrified of dialysis,” Shuman said.
So, she needs a kidney – just one.
“I want people to know that they can donate a kidney and save somebody's life and still live their life like it never happened,” Shuman said.
Friends have been tested but they're not a match. She started a Facebook page, too, hoping someone there would be a match. She also created green bracelets to sell to help with some of the medical bills. But what she wants most is more time with her family. For that, she needs just one kidney. She doesn't want to end up like her dad.
“I don't think he fought the way I'm currently fighting right now and my kids are my biggest reason in the world to beat this,” Shuman said.
You can get on the donor list by contacting Sacred Heart Medical Center. An account named “A Kidney for Jenn” has been created at US Bank locations. And, you can buy a green bracelet for $5 at Tropical Tan on Francis and Nevada in Spokane.